MHG3793 - Findspot of symbol stone, Kingsmills


A symbol stone, found in use as a stepping stone to a cow byre. Now in Inverness Museum.

Type and Period (1)

  • INSCRIBED STONE (Pictish to Early Medieval - 300 AD to 1057 AD)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

NH64SE 20 67 44

Approximately 1 mile SW of Inverness at Kingsmills, a Pictish stone fragment was discovered. Made of sandstone (0.33m x 0.3m x 0.06m) it bears an incised bull symbol on one face. It is now in Inverness Museum ( 00.210)
Information from R Jones to OS 1980.

Class I symbol stone showing a bull.
A.Mack 1997 p.110 <1>

At the time of recording this was in storage at Inverness Museum (although in The Pictish Guide by Elizabeth Sutherland, its location is incorrectly given as Stoneyfield House - this is probably confused with NH64SE0046).
Information from A Ross, 03.00, added by A M Fox, Highland Council, 21.03,00.

Included in the catalogue of Pictish Symbol stones at Inverness Museum, original version 1994, revised in 2010. The bull is described as 'a stylised bull carved with down-turned horns'. Comparable to a series of bull carvings that have been found at Burghead in Moray, but those animals emit a greater feeling of power and strength than the rather tame Inverness example. <2><3>

Inverness 1, Kingsmills, Inverness-shire, Pictish symbol stone fragment
Measurements: H 0.32m, W 0.36m, D 0.05m
Stone type: sandstone
Place of discovery: NH c 67 44
Present location: Inverness Museum & Art Gallery (INVMG 00.210)
Evidence for discovery: found in the late nineteenth century re-used as a stepping-stone to a byre at Kingsmills and taken to the finder’s house in Inverness. It was later presented to Inverness Museum. Mack discusses the original location of the two Inverness bull stones (2007, 174-5).
Present condition: broken and worn.
This fragment is part of a slab incised with what appears to be a bullock, walking towards the right. It is a somewhat inexpert depiction, and the scroll joints of the animal are stiffly drawn. Part of the hindquarters is missing.
Date: seventh century.
References: ECMS pt 3, 102-3; Mack 2007, 174-5; Fraser 2008, no 112.
Early Medieval Carved Stones Project, Compiled by A Ritchie 2017

Sources/Archives (11)



Grid reference Centred NH 6700 4400 (6m by 6m) (2 map features)
Map sheet NH64SE
Geographical Area INVERNESS

Finds (1)

  • SYMBOL STONE (Pictish - 300 AD to 900 AD)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Investigations/Events (0)

External Links (1)

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